In separate interviews on Sunday, two Republican Senators urged Congress to take a fresh look at legislation intended to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team, following the revelation that the president attempted to have Mueller fired in June 2017 by ordering White House counsel Donald McGahn to do so.
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) spoke with CNN’s “State of the Union,” where she assured host Jake Tapper that Deputy US Attorney General Rosenstein has assured her that he would block any attempt to have Robert Mueller removed from his post. Tapper then reminded Collins of the persistent rumors that Trump is trying to get Rosenstein himself fired. Mr. Rosenstein handles the Russia investigation since Jeff Sessions recused himself. Senator Collins likened Trump firing Rod Rosenstein to the desperate series of firings by former President Richard Nixon during the fever pitch of Watergate.
Tapper asked Senator Collins whether it’s time to reconsider the legislation she previously dismissed which would protect Mueller’s investigation from any maneuvers by Trump, Collins said:
“It probably wouldn’t hurt for us to pass one of those bills. There are some constitutional issues with those bills, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to put that extra safeguard in place given the latest stories, but again, I have faith in the deputy attorney general.”
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) spoke with ABC News “This Week” on the same issue. Graham told ABC’s Martha Raddatz:
“I think Mr. Mueller is the perfect guy to get to the bottom of all of this. And he will. And I think my job, among others, is to give him the space to do it. I intend to do that. I have got legislation protecting Mr. Mueller. And I’ll be glad to pass it tomorrow.
I see no evidence that Mr. Trump wants to fire Mr. Mueller now. I don’t know what happened last year, but it’s pretty clear to me that everybody in the White House knows it would be the end of the President Trump’s presidency if he fired Mr. Mueller. So I think we’re in a good spot with Mr. Mueller.”